Saatchi & Saatchi Unaffordable Housing

Mike Kononov

Saatchi & Saatchi Calls On The Industry To Follow Its Affordable Housing Initiative

Saatchi Home, LHA London’s initial collaboration with the agency, will be shared as blueprint to other industry partners to attract more diverse talent

By Creative Salon

LHA London’s initiative to attract more diverse talent into the creative industries through affordable housing provision will now be opened up to other industry partners, using its original partnership with Saatchi & Saatchi as a blueprint.

LHA London’s initial collaboration with Saatchi & Saatchi, Saatchi Home, supported by the Advertising Association, was designed to help remove one of the key barriers to entry to the creative industries, affordable housing, for persons from under-represented communities across the country.

The ambition is to now share this blueprint for success which can be replicated, at scale, by partners and competitors alike whilst inspiring, enabling and progressing more diverse talent from across the UK by providing either rent-free or subsided short-term accommodation whilst they settle into London and their new role.

According to research by Howsy based on ONS data, the average monthly rental cost as a percentage of the average monthly salary is among the highest in Hackney (83 per cent), Brent (77 per cent), and Newham (75 per cent), and even in the lowest, it remains high - Bexley (46 per cent), Bromley (46 per cent), and Croydon (50 per cent).

Charitable enterprise LHA London is one of the Capital’s leading and affordable accommodation providers, with residential properties located in some of central London’s most iconic neighbourhoods. These properties house nearly 2000 people and mainly cater for young working people, apprentices, domestic and international students, graduates and interns.

Tony Perkins, CEO of LHA London, said: “Our belief is that the cost of accommodation shouldn’t be a barrier to young people whatever their background, chosen career or education path in the Capital which is why the partnership with Saatchi & Saatchi is so pertinent as the blueprint for the industry. We now want to encourage other agencies across the creative sector to follow the lead and help young adults who would otherwise find it challenging finding affordable and quality accommodation when they begin their careers in London.”

Stephen Woodford, CEO of the Advertising Association, said: “The advertising industry is determined to make access to the industry as wide as possible and that means opening up to talent from every kind of background across the UK and overseas. The Saatchi Home initiative with LHA is exactly the kind of innovative solution we need to see to make a move to London much more affordable, so removing what is a major barrier for many. I’d be delighted to see more agencies, production companies and media owners build on this pioneering partnership.”

Sarah Jenkins, managing director of Saatchi & Saatchi, said: “We have deep rooted barriers preventing too many brilliant and talented people from entering our industry. These are challenges made harder as a result of the pandemic and those already having to navigate London living costs, often without the welcome support of Bank of Mum & Dad. I’m super proud of what we are doing with LHA through Saatchi Home, but this can and should be much bigger than that. Change will only come with the industry working together, at scale. Saatchi Home is a fantastic blueprint for any organisation who wants to be create demonstrable and sustainable change.”

Since the beginning of August, Saatchi Home has provided tiered, affordable accommodation in London’s transport Zones 1-3 through LHA London’s premises to the first cohort of candidates participating on the Saatchi Open programme – an entry-level programme open to interns and junior team members that aims to offer more flexibility and autonomy to talent.

Hemi Patel, participant on the Saatchi Home and Saatchi Open programme, said: “This opportunity wouldn’t have been possible without the support of LHA London and the Saatchi Open and Home programmes. Like many students, I’d not heard of advertising as a career choice. It was only thanks to chance that my university lecturer was an ex-creative director, who recommended I give it a shot. It’s why I’m also really keen to get involved in Saatchi Ignite.”

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